Endocrine Pathology

, Volume 14, Issue 1, pp 3–23 | Cite as

The chromogranins: Their roles in secretion from neuroendocrine cells and as markers for neuroendocrine neoplasia

  • Steven A. Feldman
  • Lee E. Eiden


Chromogranins are the major components of the secretory granules of most neuroendocrine cells. Within the secretory pathway, chromogranins are involved in granulogenesis, and in sorting and processing of secretory proteincargo prior to, secretion. Once secreted, they have hormonal, autocrine, and paracrine activities. The chromogranin family includes chromogranins A (CgA) and B (CgB)and secretogranin II (Sgll, once called chromogranin C). The related “granins” NESP55, 7B2, secretogranin III/1B 1075 (SgIII), and secretogranin IV/HISL-19 antigen (SgIV), are also sometimes included when considering the chromogranins. While it is useful to consider the granin proteins as a family with many common features, it is also necessary to examine the distinct features and properties of individual members of the granin family to understand fully their functions, employ them efficiently as tissue, serum, and urinary markers for neuroendocrine neoplasia, and develop an evolutionary-biologic perspective on their contribution to mammalian physiology. Recent advances in chromogranin research include establishing the role of CgA in granulogenesis and the role of CgB in nuclear transcription; new biologic activities for CgA-, CgB-, and SgII-derived peptides; and new marker functions for granins and their proteolytically processed products in endocrine neoplasias

Key words

Chromogranins secretory granules neuroendocrine cells pancreastatin enterochromaffin-like cells 


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Copyright information

© Humana Press Inc 2003

Authors and Affiliations

  • Steven A. Feldman
    • 1
    • 2
  • Lee E. Eiden
    • 1
    • 2
  1. 1.Section on Molecular Virology (SAF) Laboratory of Cellular and Molecular RegulationNational Institutes of HealthBethesda
  2. 2.Section on Molecular Neuroscience (LEE), Laboratory of Cellular and Molecular RegulationNational Institutes of HealthBethesda

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